Has Shaun been re born?Shaun Palmer, remember him? The cigar smoking, crown wearing, winner of what seems like everything he ever entered. Whether MTB, Snow Mobiles, NASCAR, or MX, the man's got a talent for the extreme. Without Palmer we'd all still be wearing Lycra.
Palmer stopped riding professionally when he split with Specialized back in 99/00, last making an appearance over here at the 2000 Bike Live event, racing 4X on his old Specialized HT, coated in black Hammerite. He rode wearing just jeans and a t-shirt, insane.
Well spectators at the Sea Otter Classic recently saw a guy riding, wearing just jeans and a T, on a hammerited black bike, this time an Intense Tazer HT. Coming up against Wade Bootes in the duel he was actually leading until the last straight where Bootes out powered him.
Considering he hasn't raced in three years Palmer flew. So, has he made a long awaited return to MTB? Palmer won't say yes and he won't say no, but the general consensus is that he was satisfying the ICF rule which says you must race at least once every three years to keep your official Pro status.
That would make the answer 'no'. Which is a shame because the scene could do with some of its characters back. Everyone would love to see the return of 'Shaun Na-Palmer' to the pro circuit. (Everyone and everything, perhaps, apart from Rob Warner's nipples, which Palm liked to pinch violently when he caught Rob off guard to start a mock - but damn dangerous - ruck). That's Palmer for you, as sophisticated as Posh and, we're sure he would agree, better looking/Jamie Carter